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Video of the week: Amputee uses LEGOs to make prosthetic leg

July 9, 2013
Rachel Bennett

If you’ve ever dismissed LEGOs as a simple toy, you may want to think again.

Christina Stephens, a 31-year-old amputee from St. Louis, has found a new purpose for the popular building blocks: prosthetics.

When a co-worker joked that Stephens should make a leg prosthesis out of LEGOs, Stephens got the last laugh by actually undertaking — and completing — the project.

In just two hours over two days, Stephens, an occupational therapist and clinical researcher, built a LEGO leg. She filmed the process for her YouTube channel, AmputeeOT, which features “informational videos related to healthcare, occupational therapy, prosthetics, manual wheelchairs, medical equipment and more.”

Watch the video below to see Stephens construct her prosthesis:

Although the LEGO prosthesis is non-functional, Stephens plans to make one that can move long distances.

“I’d probably have to stiffen the pylon part, reinforcing it with steel or carbon fiber or something,” she says.

Stephens’ current leg prosthesis is a carbon fiber socket with a carbon fiber foot on the end.

Of building the LEGO leg, Stephens says, “I did it because I like to explore the space underneath my residual limb that other people don’t have, so I can inspire them to be more comfortable with their own bodies and with the bodies of people who are different.”

And, she adds, “Sometimes, you just need to be silly.”

What do you think of this week’s video? Let us know!